Murphy’s place in East Ren remains to be decided

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Jim Murphy MP is bidding for the Scottish Labour leadership — and remains undecided on whether he will contest next year’s general election for East Renfrewshire.

The local MP resigned from the shadow cabinet this week to focus on his campaign to become the next Scottish Labour leader, following Johann Lamont’s resignation.

Mr Murphy is one of three candidates vying for the position, running against MSPs Sarah Boyack and Neil Findlay.

Following the announcement of his leadership bid last week, the East Ren man told The Extra: “I will take one election at a time and will make a decision about my future once the contest for Scottish Labour leader is over.

“Throughout this process I will continue working hard for East Renfrewshire.”

Mr Murphy — who has acted as MP for East Ren (then Eastwood) since 1997 — explained: “I want to change my party and change Scotland. I want to be the first minister of our great country. It was a difficult decision to take but I think it’s the right thing to do.

“I have three priorities for Scotland. Firstly, I want to bring our country back together, united around more powers for Scotland within the UK.

“Secondly, I want to increase prosperity so that there is more money to improve our schools and hospitals.

“And thirdly, I want to cut poverty, especially for families in work.”

The new leadership team will be announced on December 13.